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Coming together for Jasmine

Community rallies to support 4-year-old with brain cancer

Jasmine Cole, 4, was diagnosed with brain cancer for the second time in January. She has had numerous surgeries and weeks of radiation and chemotherapy.

Jasmine Cole, 4, was diagnosed with brain cancer for the second time in January. She has had numerous surgeries and weeks of radiation and chemotherapy. Submitted Photo

— Chris Cole never dreamed his daughter, Jasmine, would develop brain cancer. But last January, she did. When the tumor was removed, he refused to imagine that it would grow back. But this January, it did.

“She was getting MRIs every three months and they were looking good, no new growth or anything and she was recovering nicely,” said Cole, of Menands. “She started showing some signs of something in January so we took her to the emergency room … and her entire tumor had grown back.”

News that the tumor was back hit Cole and his wife, Young, especially hard. Jasmine’s September scan had been clean, which meant the tumor (initially diagnosed as a low grade brain tumor) grew back to its original size in less than three months.

“It’s now a high grade tumor, a different type of cancer,” said Cole.

Life has been hard for the Coles. Besides Jasmine, 4, they have a 2-year-old son, Sebastian.

“We have to (make sure) he doesn’t feel left out or anything,” said Cole.

With no family nearby (Young’s family is in Korea and Cole’s is in Texas), the community has stepped up to fill that void and offer support.

On Saturday, April 14, some of Jasmine’s preschool teachers are hosting a fundraiser to help with medical expenses. From 2 to 5 p.m. at the Delmar Reformed Church, there will be a magician, reptile adventure company, a band, vendors, a toy and book sale and a silent auction.

“We thought having a fundraiser would help the family a bit and let them have a nice day,” said Francesca Casaregola, an organizer.

Casaregola has known Jasmine since before she was diagnosed and said she’s remained the same throughout it all.

“She’s a very sweet, energetic little girl. She likes dolls and princesses and things like that,” said Casaregola.

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